Your website is the heart and soul of your digital marketing campaign. With so many products and services saturating the market, you need to amplify your website design to stand out amid your fiercest competitors. At On The Map, our decades of experience honing our clients’ websites have taught us that website design best practices are crucial to your success. You don’t merely want to survive in a cutthroat industry, but you also want to thrive.
More Than Aesthetics
You need to prioritize improving your website design and pay attention to its details because it has the crucial job of making a good first impression on your prospective clients. It is common for site visitors to make quick judgments about your business within seconds of seeing your landing page. Of course, you want all your visitors to stick around and explore the different tabs to find out more about your company.
Design is more than aesthetics, as it plays a huge role in how people interact with your website. If you are unable to entice your website visitors to navigate your pages and explore your content, your website traffic will plummet. However, with the right website design components, you can encourage them to learn more about your business, read your blogs, make a purchase, and come back. Clearly, the design has the power to generate leads and boost client conversion.
So if you still think that your web page design is a minor consideration that deals with vanity, our team of experts at On The Map is here to remind you that it is necessary. In fact, website design is one of the most vital strategies in your digital marketing campaign. Here are some website design best practices that our design pros have compiled to help you maximize your official website’s results and increase your site traffic.
Craft a Branding Strategy That Suits Your Industry
One of the perils of lacking consistent design and branding is that your website looks very confusing. You need to decide on your logo, colors, and overall theme so you can position your business in a better light. Unfortunately, in this dog eat dog world, you will always be judged based on how you look.
When you analyze it, this inclination is a part of human nature. The eyes are always drawn to visually-appealing objects and turned off from those that look unpalatable. As such, work hard to ensure that your web page design is pleasing to the eyes.
It is important to convey your message with a mere glance, which you can achieve through stellar web design. When your design is able to exude a cohesive feel, it will provide your site visitors with a more positive experience, stimulating better-recall. And this is the ultimate goal because you want them to be thinking of your logo and offerings even when they are no longer looking at your page.
With the right web design, you can improve brand awareness, build trust with your visitors, and inspire them to come back. When it comes to any kind of business, reputation is everything. Clients will be more inclined to buy and promote you if they think you are a trustworthy company.
Choose Simple Navigation that Doesn’t Confuse
Nowadays, people have diminished attention spans. As much as possible, you want your navigation to be simple. If people can’t find what they’re looking for quickly, they will leave your site and search for information elsewhere. And they just might head off to your competitors.
Your website must be primed for quick and easy navigation so that your clients can find all the information about your products, services, guarantees, history, and contact information. Knowledge is power when it comes to making educated choices. If your target audience can’t get it from your site, they will not convert.
To ensure efficient website navigation, organize your page with proper headings, menus, tabs, and categories. These elements make it so much easier for your visitors to access what they need. You have to think like your audience to determine what they are searching for. With this, you can add suggested links to your footer so you can take them directly to the pages that pique their interest. Most of all, don’t forget that important search bar.
Navigation is a significant factor in your website’s success. It has the power to keep users exploring your site and points them to the information they need. Most of all, navigation can play a role in keeping them engaged with your content. All of these factors perform a tremendous role in increasing your company’s bottom line.
Employ a Responsive Design Interface
People now have access to many different types of devices. Today, almost 5 billion people own a mobile device like smartphones and tablets. Gone are the days when people exclusively perused websites using their desktops and laptops. Because of this, your website design has to be highly responsive.
A responsive design means that your website will adjust to the browser and screen based on the device of your website visitor. This means whether someone is accessing your site through a PC or a phone, the browsing experience is never compromised. With the right website design, you can deliver premium browsing for all your clients.
This design factor is crucial to the success of your site. If you are unable to shrink down the regular buttons and links into a smaller screen of the mobile phone, those will be harder to see. Building a great website that looks good via desktop or laptop is not enough. When the same design elements move on mobile, it can look cluttered and unorganized. Remember that the PC is usually landscape, and most people on mobile view via portrait mode.
Most people browse on mobile because this gives them the flexibility to view any website while on-the-go. For this reason, you need to ensure that your website is not just optimized traditionally, but it is also very mobile-friendly.
Poor website experience will reduce a big chunk of your prospective clients. With responsive design, you provide great user experience that can lead your visitors to spend more time on your site. You can look forward to increasing page views and encouraging them to convert.
Optimize Visual Elements
You must balance your content with eye-catching visual elements. A text-heavy website is very draining for the eyes. The eye-catching tidbits on your site will keep your visitors engaged. The human eye is naturally attracted to pleasing photos, graphics, and videos. Remember the timeless adage: a picture paints a thousand words. With the right visual elements, you can say what you need to within a matter of seconds.
The aid of the proper visual elements means you can enhance the whole experience of clients when they navigate your web page. With quality pictures and videos, you can draw your users and retain their elusive attention. The right combination of graphics and text is very compelling, so you can keep the eyes scrolling through your pages.
However, this doesn’t mean you can just flippantly choose when it comes to your website design components. Do remember to select photos that are relevant to your brand and page content. Steer clear from stock photos that are already overused and deemed as generic. It would be better to choose your own products that convey your brand’s uniqueness. You can also use images of your own staff and work area.
To amplify your website design, use various custom graphics or infographics. At On The Map, we have a team that can help craft, personalize, and incorporate these interesting visuals to your web page. We can also add a video that’s custom fit for your industry, which is a great lead generation tool. Studies show that videos can improve conversions by 86%, which is an astounding figure. People also tend to remain longer on sites that employ videos.
Incorporate Social Media Buttons with Care
One of the best approaches to effectively promote your business is by utilizing social media marketing because almost 4 billion people are actively using these platforms. As such, it is important to incorporate social media buttons to your website so your visitors can easily follow your Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Instagram, etc.
These social media buttons can be incorporated swiftly into your page layout. You can place them in your header, navigation, footer, or wherever you deem fit. Although this button will veer traffic away from your site, it will still help promote your business because they can follow you on these platforms where you can interact. Using social media also expands your brand’s reach to a wider audience base with every like, share, and comment.
Best of all, when they like what they see on your social media profile updates, there is a bigger chance that they will come back to your site. If you have a blog where you regularly publish fresh content, include share buttons to make it easy for your followers and other audiences to share and promote your stuff on their own social media profiles.
Making these simple button tweaks within your website design components will do wonders for spreading brand awareness. This method is very simple but very efficient and effective. It will amplify your brand’s visibility allowing you to reach more prospective consumers.
Aim for Easy Readability
Content may be king, but if people have trouble reading it, then you will be unable to achieve your marketing goals. At On The Map, our marketing experts noticed that this design element is often overlooked. It will be a terrible waste if you are unable to leverage this component. It means the information you painstakingly prepared will not be read.
The primary goal must be for people to understand all the content on your website. To achieve this, ensure there is plenty of contrast between your chosen background colors and text. When you employ this strategy, your text will be easy to scan because it stands out.
Another important readability ingredient is the font. Your chosen font is not just for aesthetics. It plays a lead role in how easy it is for people to read your content. You may be tempted to choose funky fonts with a lot of curves and embellishments. However, these are harder to read and will strain the eyes.
For best results, stick to simpler fonts for your body. If you want to use the fancier fonts, reserve them for titles, headings, and subheadings. Just make sure to opt to 2 to 3 font styles. Using too much variety will make your site look cluttered. Abiding by a theme means you create a unified feel that won’t make your visitors dizzy.
Finally, you have to ascertain that the size of the font is big enough to read. If you are unable to follow these elements, you will turn off your users. Your site’s readability has a dramatic effect on how your visitors experience and perceive your website. This is very easy to fix, so make the necessary tweaks, and you’ll be improving your website design by several folds.
Design Strong CTAs or Calls to Action
The reasons you established your website are to attract your target audience, tell them about your product offerings, and entice them to complete an action. This could be anything from signing up for your weekly newsletter, downloading an ebook, making a consultation, or purchasing a product. When it comes to converting website visitors and prospects into new clients, you must rely on strong CTAs.
These elements are what your site visitors see directly. It can transform them from a mere lead to an actual converted customer. No matter how beautifully designed your webpages are, if you don’t have CTAs that entice them to perform an action, they will leave your website.
Do note that it doesn’t even have to be an immediate sale. A CTA that directs to another page is just as effective because it means clients will spend more time perusing your site.
Don’t forget to include a relevant CTA on each of your pages so you can remind your site visitors what they ought to do. This is akin to giving them directives, so you are leading them to the right option. In essence, your CTAs guide your leads to making the best choice that’s the most favorable for your business.
When it comes to expanding your business, CTAs are essential. Make these elements creative by designing special buttons that really standout. They have the power to turn curious onlookers and visitors to clients. When you add one on each page of your site, you can increase the conversion rate tremendously. As a result, you can enhance your site and make it a more valuable tool for boosting your business. With attractive CTAs, you can transform traffic into sales.
Use the Best SEO Practices
When it comes to improving your website design, you have to abide by SEO best practices to take your pages to a higher level. Here at On the Map, we have over a decade of experience in Search Engine Optimization. According to our in-house SEO experts, you must incorporate SEO approaches when designing your page because obtaining a high placement in SERP (search engine results page) will increase traffic to your website and improve your company’s visibility.
By using the right set of keywords in your content, your site will be primed for the best results in all the search engines. When you amplify your website, don’t forget to incorporate on-page SEO tags, XML sitemaps, and schema. All of these elements will help your website target the right audience.
Remember, no matter how good your products and services are, if your prospective clients don’t know how to find you, all your hard work will go to waste. This is crucial in today’s Google culture. Practically everyone goes on the internet when they have a question, an inquiry, or other matters they want to verify. The worldwide web is a gold mine of information, and if you want to stay on top of your niche, incorporating SEO is the key.
Aim for Fast Loading Time
Since everyone in the modern world is used to instantaneous stuff, from instant noodles to coffee, then you must prioritize fast loading for your website design. Only one second of delay in your page loading speed can result in a drop in sales by up to 27%. No wants to visit a webpage that takes forever to load. And nothing is more infuriating than buffering.
As a business, you must prioritize improving your page loading speed. Today, 47% of your site visitors expect it to load in less than two seconds. The same experts also note that almost half of the visitors will leave you if your site takes over three seconds to load. As such, you need to implement several strategies like the following:
- Compress images to reduce the size for faster loading. Switching between different images sizes and qualities can save your bandwidth, allowing you to reduce the image weight without compromising the quality.
- Examine your cache to ensure that your browser caching has a static version. With this process, you can quicken the page loading and improve server lag. When a visitor goes to your webpage, the cached version shall be served, saving your server from too many requests.
- Assess your plugins to ensure they offer new features and add functionality to your website. However, make sure these are quality plugins because the more you load, the more work it has to do, which could equate to delays. For best results, enable response headers in the HTTP keep-alive format.
- Enable additional compression for other resources. Try lowering the number of bytes your page is sending through the network. Create consistency with your HTML and CSS codes which will optimize all your site content for compression.
Consider Adding Email Marketing Elements
Email marketing is simply one of the most traditional forms of staying connected in this digital era. It plays a vital fun function in keeping your existing customers and your prospective customers in the loop. You can offer various types of content like promos, informative pieces on your products, how-to articles, and the like.
Our On The Map experts can design an effective email marketing plan for your website. This is a useful tool for engaging with your target audience. Studies show that 81% of small and mediums scale enterprises rely on email as the main method for acquiring customers, while 80% use it to retain the attention of existing ones.
This data proves that email is a strong force to contend with, so you must rely on this to grow and expand your business. To execute this effectively, start by updating your site’s email campaign strategies. Make sure that your site’s email capture forms are synchronized with your email marketing systems. This will enable easy access and seamless connection.
You must prioritize the design of your email sign up icon. Ascertain that your audience will not have to work hard to search for this button. Placing this icon on both your headers and footers will improve visibility. These are the best practices you ought to consider when crafting your email marketing program.
Imbibing these tips into you or website design will help you increase more traffic, which paves the way for greater leads and better conversion rates. However, if some of these sound too technical for you, we at On The Map are happy to serve you. We are a full-service digital marketing company with many years of experience tucked under our belt. We are well-known in the industry for creating websites for our clients, and our team of On the Map professionals are always ready to make your website dreams become a reality.